Clear Creek Visitor Information

Clear Creek Access Open

The order calling for the hard closure of Clear Creek expired at midnight, Sunday August 13. The Chief of Police and City Manager decided to allow the order to expire so the creek is now open and fencing has been removed.

Clear Creek runs through the heart of Golden, offering scenic beauty, recreation, and a valuable natural resource all in one popular, sparkling package. Fishermen, kayakers, tubers, sunbathers, runners, bikers, skateboarders, walkers, gold-panners…almost everyone who lives in or visits Golden is drawn to the banks of this popular waterway and the Clear Creek Trail system that runs alongside it for one of the many recreational opportunities it affords. Clear Creek has also been the center of Golden’s commerce since the City was founded, providing a natural water source for Coors Brewery, and the center of many a gold miner’s hopes and dreams during the Gold Rush. Today, the Creek continues to be Golden’s central hub of activity.

Learn more about the City’s ongoing efforts to protect this unique and beloved resource with the Clear Creek Management Plan.

USGS Water Data for Clear Creek
Clear Creek Fun!

Trail Information

Clear Creek Trail MapClear Creek Trail is actually a group of trails that connect nearby neighborhoods to schools, the Golden Community Center, the downtown area, and many popular spots. Starting at it’s most western point, the trail follows Clear Creek past the RV park on the northern bank, and continues east past Clear Creek White Water ParkLions Park, the library, Golden City Government buildings and the Chamber of Commerce, then moves to the south bank after crossing Washington Street. Soon after, the trail jogs north and connects with Vanover Park, then continues on to Wheat Ridge, eventually connecting with other trails in the Denver Metro area.

Download the Regional Clear Creek Trail Map pdf download for a view of the full trail system.

This trail is easy, multi-use (bikes, rollerblades, skateboards, runners, walkers), and paved.


Access the Clear Creek Trail via Vanover Park at Water and Ford streets, the Visitor Center at Washington and 10th streets, the Library at 10th and Illinois streets, Lions Park at 10th and Maple streets, or from 6th Avenue Trail.


Golden offers an abundant amount of FREE parking for visitors on weekends and holidays and for the first two hours on weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Street parking is also free throughout the City, except for designated residential parking at certain times and days around the Colorado School of Mines campus and 9th Street.

Please visit our Visitor Parking page for more information about parking in Golden, including maps, and parking rates and locations for long-term parking on weekdays.

Rules & Regulations

It’s simple – “Be good to the Creek and it will be good to you.” 

  • Pick up your trash and recycle
  • Scoop the poop and keep dogs leashed
  • Respect nature and sensitive areas
  • Stay out of fenced-off areas
  • Keep food, drink and structures out of creek
  • Respect the planet, people and property

In addition to these rules of respectful and neighborly behavior along the creek, the City enforces three zero tolerance regulations, called “The Golden Rule.”

Read more about the rules and regulations that apply to using any of our many beautiful parks on our Park Rules page.

The Golden Rule

Park Rangers

Golden Clear Creek Park RangersClear Creek Park Rangers patrol the creek banks, offer assistance when needed, and make sure people are following the rules while having fun and staying safe. The Rangers are easy to spot, dressed in khaki slacks or shorts and green polo shirts with the words “Park Ranger” across the back.

The Rangers are there to enforce the rules and regulations and they can issue tickets, but they are also there if you need help, have a question, or want to report any suspicious activity. The hope is that creek users will be respectful and follow the rules so that everyone can enjoy their time in Clear Creek.

If you witness a non-emergency situation that requires a Park Ranger and none are immediately available to flag down, please call the Police non-emergency dispatch number at 303-980-7300.

Having Fun in the Heat

The summer is a great time to get outdoors and have fun, but the higher temperatures do pose some challenges and risks. When you’re out splashing around in Clear Creek or just playing on the sunny banks, it’s important to understand how to prevent sunburn, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke, and to clear up the misconceptions that often come with them. Jefferson County Open Space offers tips and information on safely recreating in the heat in the document available for download below.

And please remember, NEVER leave your four-legged friend unattended in the car when it’s warm out, even with windows partially rolled down. Even on a beautiful 70 degree day, after a half hour, the temperature inside a car can reach 104 degrees. After an hour, it can reach 113 degrees.

Shopping & Dining is the official visitors site for Golden with information about where to dine, shop, stay and play! Discover things to do in Golden, search a database of restaurants and retails, learn about the Golden Ticket or Coors Brewery Tours, or uncover the latest deal in town. It’s your one-stop shop for what makes Golden, Golden!


Clear Creek Trail is maintained by the City of GoldenWe appreciate resident and visitor communication and feedback to ensure the Golden parks system remains safe and clean. To report maintenance concerns or damages, contact the Parks Department at (303) 384-8140.

COG Mesa

 Golden has 402 acres of open space
and maintains 253 acres of parks right within the city itself.

Additional Resources

City of Golden, Colorado
COG Mesa